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NFL Power Rankings: Browns jump to No. 13 heading into Week 5

A win over Washington didn’t move the needle, but putting 49 points on the Cowboys did.

Here is a summary of how the Cleveland Browns are viewed across mainstream media outlets in NFL Power Rankings heading into Week 5 of the 2020 NFL season.

CBS Sports - No. 10 (up 8 spots)

Kevin Stefanski has this team at 3-1. That’s something for a team known for its losing in recent years. The running game is keying the offense, but now it has to do so without Nick Chubb for six weeks.

ESPN - No. 14 (up 4 spots)

The Browns’ offense looks legit, even if it will have to weather losing RB Nick Chubb for the next few weeks to a knee injury. Cleveland also has the second-easiest remaining schedule. So already at 3-1, with several other expected AFC wild-card contenders such as Denver and Houston faltering, the Browns seem to have a better than 50% chance of finally snapping the league’s longest playoff drought (18 years).

NFL.com - No. 13 (up 2 spots)

The Browns waited more than a year for this Odell Beckham Jr. performance. The Cowboys scored 24 consecutive points in the fourth quarter on Sunday, turning a sure Browns win into a game with the potential of Falcons-level tragedy. That’s when Baker Mayfield delivered an underhand toss to Beckham, who dodged Aldon Smith deep in the backfield and turned what would have been a huge loss into a 50-yard touchdown run that saved the day for the Browns. Beckham was a superhero, finishing with three total touchdowns on the day. That was the guy Cleveland thought it was getting from the Giants in March of 2019. If this Beckham hangs around, the surging Browns just got much more dangerous.

MMQB - No. 13 (up 5 spots)

Bill Callahan is a magician, and Jedrick Wills looks like a home-run draft pick, and suddenly all that optimism lost is back in Cleveland.

Yahoo Sports - No. 12 (up 5 spots)

The Browns put up 508 yards and 49 points without any player posting 100 rushing or receiving yards, and with Baker Mayfield putting up just 165 passing yards. They also did it with Nick Chubb missing most of the game due to injury. That speaks to the offense’s efficiency and depth, the latter of which will be tested with Chubb out a few weeks.

Bleacher Report - No. 13 (up 3 spots)

It’s been a long time since the Cleveland Browns were 3-1. The last time the Browns opened the season with three wins in four games was 2001. But after outlasting the Dallas Cowboys in Week 4’s wildest affair, that’s where Kevin Stefanski and the Browns find themselves. Stefanski’s identity is clearly imprinted on this team. The 2020 Browns are all about running the ball. Despite losing Nick Chubb in the first half, the Browns gashed the Cowboys for 307 yards on the ground—the most Dallas has ever allowed in a single contest.

Sunday’s win was also the best game Odell Beckham Jr. has had in his year-plus with the Browns. Beckham hauled in five catches for 81 yards and two scores and scored a third touchdown on a 50-yard reverse in the fourth quarter that salted the game away. The performance has given the long-suffering fans in Cleveland the most optimism they’ve had in quite some time, but Week 5 will bring a stiff test against the league’s best defense when the Indianapolis Colts come to town.

“Cleveland is legit,” Gagnon said. “Any team with weapons on Odell Beckham Jr. and Myles Garrett on either side of the ball can do serious damage, and the offensive depth should give the Browns room for the odd tough day from Baker Mayfield. This is an 11- or 12-win team and a Super Bowl contender.” Still, because it’s Cleveland, the win came at a cost. Per ESPN’s Jake Trotter, running back Nick Chubb suffered an MCL sprain that is expected to sideline him for about six weeks.

Associated Press - No. 13 (up 5 spots)

Listed below is a summary table of where teams in the AFC North are ranked this week.

Bengals Browns Ravens Steelers
CBS Sports 24 10 6 3
ESPN 27 14 4 7
NFL.com 23 13 3 5
MMQB 23 13 7 5
Yahoo Sports 24 12 2 6
Bleacher Report 23 13 4 5
Associated Press 23 13 5 6
Average 23.9
(up 4.1)
12.6
(up 4.5)
4.4
(down 0.8)
5.3
(no change)